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HomeContents > People > Photographers > Serge Levitsky

Born: Sergei Lvovich Levitsky 
Other: Count Sergei Lvovich Levitsky 
Other: S.L. Levitsky 
Other: Sergei Levitski 
Other: Sergei Lewitski 
Other: Sergey Levitsky 
Other: Sergey Lvovich Levitzky 
Dates:  1819 - 1898, 22 June
Born:  Russia, Moscow
Died:  Russia, St. Petersburg
Active:  France / Russia / Germany / Italy
Russian photographer, writer and art critic. He begain taking Daguerreotypes in 1839 as soon as the process became known. After graduating from the Faculty of Law at Moscow University he started working for the Ministery of the Interior in St. Petersburg. His knowledge of photography was put to early use in 1843 when he was sent to survey the mineral waters of the Caucuses and took twenty five Daguerreotypes of Piatigorsk, Kislovodsk, Mount Meshuk and Beshtan. Five of these Daguerreotypes reached the instrument maker Charles Chevalier in Paris who exhibited two of them in his shop window. Charles Chevalier supplied equipment to both Daguerre and Fox Talbot and was well connected with the innovators in photography. This early success led Levitsky to take up photography as a career and he traveled to the leading centres of Paris, London, Vienna and Rome to improve his knowledge. The "Répertoire des Photographes de France" states that he was a Daguerreotypist in both Germany and Italy. In the 1850s he was a photographer in St. Petersburg and during the early 1860s he was in Paris with a studio at 22 Rue de Choiseul. Some of his later portrait photographs indicate that he later returned to St. Petersburg where he became the major court photographer working with his son, the artist and photographer, Rafail Levitsky in the 1890s.
He authored two volumes of memoirs Reminiscences of an Old Photographer (1892) and How I Became a Photographer (1896). He is buried in St. Petersburg's Smolenskoye Cemetery.
If anybody knows the whereabouts of surviving Daguerreotypes by Sergey Levitsky I'd be most grateful.

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Rafail Levitsky
Portrait of S.L. Levitsky 
Family history 
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Exhibitions on this website

Theme: Portrait
ThumbnailSerge Levitsky: CDVs of European and Russian royalty and aristocracy 
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Internet biographies

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Wikipedia has a biography of this photographer. Go to website

Printed biographies

The following books are useful starting points to obtain brief biographies but they are not substitutes for the monographs on individual photographers.

• Lenman, Robin (ed.) 2005 The Oxford Companion to the Photograph (Oxford: Oxford University Press)  [Includes a short biography on Serge Levitsky.] 
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